I have to admit this thing with the neighbors is STILL getting to me! As are numerous other things, like the church situation. (It's nice to know where not alone, Spunky's family has been on the church search too), changed relationships with family members –ongoing for about 3-4 years now, unsettledness in not knowing what God is doing with the adoption process, frustration over the ballet studios change, not for the better. (Is that enough to stress anyone else out? )
I have given over these things most often to God's sovereignty; but with the dog situation, the other issues have cropped up a little and I've been having a mini-pity party.
I woke up early this morning and decided I needed to change what I was reading through for my Bible study time. I found Elizabeth George's “Fruit of the Spirit” study and went directly to the chapter on peace. She had much good to share on the subject. Things I needed to be reminded about. Like–
** My peace has nothing to do with circumstances and everything to do with knowing I have a right relationship with God.”
** My peace has nothing to do with daily challenges or crisis and everything to do with knowing that my time is in God's hands.
** My peace has nothing to do with the condition of my life and everything to do with knowing that God is all sufficient.
** My peace is an inward response to the serenity of soul that indicates a heart at rest regardless of my circumstances as I place complete confidence in God minute by minute.
** The key to peace is not the absence of conflict but the presence of God no matter what the conflict.
We have decided that I cannot babysit the dog everytime he needs to go out. He is a big dog, he need excercise. Shane sat down last night with the children and explained that we would do our best to keep an eye on Ben, but if he chose to go over to the neighbors yard what happened would be between the neighbor and Ben. We are hoping that when it comes down to it, the neighbor would not kill Ben, but can't be sure. We have decided that it would be better keeping him and knowing what happened to him that getting rid of him and not ever seeing him again. This wasn't a hard decision since we just got rid of the beagle several weeks ago.
I have also decided to bake some cookies, thanks Linda. And attach a note apologizing for my unChristlike behavior. We don't know if they know that I haven't behaved Christlike, but I need to apologize for me nonetheless. I will also make an effort to wave at them no matter how hard it is. I have to remember that these people are not believers and to shine the love of Christ no matter how hard it may be. Maybe the cookies and a note will be a beginning to healing. Never the same as it was– but at least amicable.
Have a blessed, day filled with peace